BELFAST—Small enough to be affordable and accessible, but bursting with quiet beauty, works from 21 artists from around Maine are now hanging at the Maine Farmland Trust Gallery as a tribute to Maine rural culture.
“We wanted to showcase a range of different artists from Maine, but the one connecting thread is that they have ties to the land or an agricultural theme,” said Karen Giles, gallery coordinator. “For us, we’re open to both the pastoral or rural theme of the work as well as the quality of the work.”
MFT’s one-room gallery is punctuated by a black wrought iron circular staircase by the window. As an intimate setting, it doesn’t intimidate and by the works’ mere size, it invites the viewer for closer examination and contemplation.
When one first walks inside, the eye is naturally drawn to a quadrant of iron and oxide prints with recycled cloth and paper by Susan L. Smith. Their coffee, tawny, umber tones are soothing; then to find out what they are made from makes total sense.
“She actually used soils from particular farms to dye the pieces within the frame and that’s one of the things that really appealed to us,” said Giles. “It adds a really cool favor to the show.”
According to the show’s description: “The works in the exhibit range from panoramas in oils and pastels –to landscapes, wooden sculptures of playful owls and other beautiful works of animals, as well as pastoral still lifes, acrylics, pen and ink, stab-binding tiny books, mixed media collage, and oils.
The exhibit will be on display from November 12, 2019 through January 10, 2020, with a gallery reception during the Belfast Holiday Art Walk on Friday, December 6, from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Located at 97 Main Street in Belfast, MFT is open weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and will be open into the evening for the Holiday Art Walk. For more information, visit mainefarmlandtrustgallery.org.
Kay Stephens can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org